Since the beginning of the year, I have been a member of the administration committee of Objectif Emploi, an employment assistance organization for newcomers. This NPO amazes me by its creativity, the dynamism and the motivation of its team, and its capacity to innovate in order to find sources of financing to reach its targets in an environment limited by the budget cuts.
On the initiative of Jean-Baptiste Audrerie, Chairman of the Board, we met recently on the premises of Moitié-moitié * to talk about social innovation. We had the opportunity to discuss with Pascal Beauchesne, a strong advocate of the concept.
What is social innovation?
According to Pascal, social innovation is the common sense to do together, to face a social issue, with our knowledge and our knowledge. It's a matter of common values and human openness and listening, being ready to step out of our comfort zone to bring out the best in ourselves ... the more diversity and diversity, the more is inclusive. Even the smallest gesture can have an immense impact, one must never doubt it.
Social innovation does not take a particular form. It is sometimes procedural, sometimes organizational or institutional. Social innovation can also take a tangible form (eg technology, product). For example, it can be found in the form of an experimental space (physical place) where the renewal of the services (merchants or public), but also of the main figures (the entrepreneur, the utility, the value) which animate our societies, our cities and our neighborhoods.
Today we are witnessing a proliferation of initiatives and proposals to change the world. Social innovation would thus be one of the elements of the reconstitution of a "reforming nebula".
How can we make the link with the company?
According to Pascal, innovation, through its ability to transform practices and ways of thinking, in turn contributes to social change. There is a dialectical relationship between social change and social innovation. Companies must think their business model with:
1- a collective will to solve economic and social problems in reference to principles, values, shared standards 2- on the ability to identify opportunities and economic niches 3- on the choice to design an alternative model that we to qualify as human development, a-capitalist, sustainable and reticular.
Innovation is a dimension of social change, it appears as an effect and also as a cause of change. In other words, the social changes will generate a mobilization of actors for the resolution of new problems and favor the invention and the appropriation of combinations that will be translated into new products and services. By way of illustration, we can consider that social integration through economic activity has been an innovative response to the socio-economic changes that have weakened the wage society by offering activities and support to vulnerable, vulnerable people.
Locally, when we look at the EXEKO case, we need to bring HR and business models of these models and raise awareness about their programs (with for example idAction is a socio-educational program for young adults marginalized or at risk of exclusion).
An example more popular internationally would be Danone with the creation of Danone.communities. Danone has some 50 social and societal innovation projects, spread over three major programs. With the implementation of their "social business" network focused on reducing poverty and malnutrition, the company spends up to 10% of investment subscriptions in social business companies in infant feeding, micropro- food distribution and access to water.
And recruitment, what does he have to do with all this?
And if we thought otherwise? And if the astronomical sums spent on the employer brand were used to train more locally? And if our ability to innovate socially was an integral part of our employer brand? What if we stopped working silently to really work together?
Car sharing, eco-responsible behavior, promotion of work with the disabled ... Social innovation necessarily implies the adoption of new human resource management practices to support the new organization of work.
Remember the definition of Pascal: "the common sense to do together, to face a stake of society, with our knowledge and our knowledge". It seems so simple ...
In this month of abundance for most of us, finishing the year on this note is not innocent ... I wish you very happy holidays, sharing, and joy - Enjoy!
*Moitié-moitié: TTania Jiménez, founder of Moité-moitié, welcomed us to her premises. A fantastic woman, lit, passionate. Mexican origin, graphic designer, she decides to found this space based on sharing and culinary discoveries. But beyond this aspect, Tania enhances the level of trust and allows participants to create their new network.
On social innovation:
Concilier Business et Innovation sociale
LABis de l'Institut du Nouveau-Monde
Déclaration québécoise pour l'innovation sociale
La co-production du savoir sur l'innovation sociale
Centre for social innovation (Toronto)
Réseau québécois d'innovation sociale
Le design social a ses limites
Stanford Social Innovation Review
Fondation McConnell - Programme d'innovation sociale
A big thank you to Jean-Baptiste for this evening, and Pascal for taking the time and kindness to answer my questions.
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